Archive for the 'Depression' Category

Causes and associations in mood disorders

Friday, September 5th, 2014 No Commented
Under: Depression

Depression and other mood disorders tend to proliferate as a result of multiple. complex. biological, psychological and social factors, including war and other violent conflicts, natural disasters, poverty and limited access to resources. A combination of genetic and environmental factors join to unchain depression (Sullivan et al.. 2000: Wong and Licinio. 2001: Lesch. 2004: Hamel and Tremblay, 2005: Ebmeier et al., 2006). Multiple susceptibility genes of major or small effect, in interaction with each other and in conjunction with environmental events, produce vulnerability to the disorder.

A significant determinant of depression is the individual’s “personal threshold.” or vulnerability to depression. Some people are more likely than others to become depressed. but no one is immune. Depression can affect individuals at any stage of the life span. although the incidence is highest during middle age. There is, however, an increasing recognition of depression during adolescence and young adulthood (Lewinsohn et al., 1993: Taylor et al.. 2002)

Coping With Depression

Sunday, July 31st, 2011 No Commented
Under: Depression

Depression is one of the darkest illness that can ever befall a person. It’s an illness that can only be fully explained and understood by someone going through it. I visit some of the blogs kept by people who are suffering from episodes of depression just in other to understand the illness more and encourage them, and the way they describe the feeling is pitable.

But luckily those who put the time and consistent effort to fight depression eventually overcome it, and you can too.

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Coping with depression is one of the most difficult challenges there is, but it’s still within your control. You definitely can overcome depression as many have done, and are now in charge of their lives again. You just need to understand the cause of the illness for you and start the process of fighting it.

How to Overcome Depression

Do some research and educate yourself about the disease, learn about the disease, it possible causes, risk factors, symptoms and the available treatments for it. Also learn necessary skills for coping with depression.

Speak with a qualified doctor and decide on the best treatment for your type of depression and be patient with the treatment process. Give your treatment time to work. After a while if there is no positive changes in your condition, discuss with your doctor to try another treatment.

You see, there is no one for all treatment for depression, in most cases sufferer’s have to go through several treatment options before they find the one suitable for them. Meaning you’ll have to endure to find what will work for you.

Depression Coping Skills

The skills below is to compliment your treatment and help improve your mood regularly.

Do some form of exercise regularly: Professionals have agreed that exercise can be as helpful as antidepressant drug, it’s gives you back some of your energy and lift your mood. Don’t go to the extreme with this, especially when just starting out, regular short walks around your neighborhood or to a friend’s place could just be all you need everyday to restore your energy and keep your mood right.

Don’t keep feelings bottled up: Refraining from expressing how you feel and what you think will keep you in a dark mood and depressed, so try sharing your feelings with a friend or family member, a counselor, writing it out on a dairy, a blog or express them through drawing.

Try Mediation: Meditation is another known way to handle the dark mood depression causes. Among other things it helps you relax. There are different techniques you can try, mindful meditation, visualization, Self-Inquiry and e.t.c.

Get extra help: Don’t do it alone, let your friends and loved ones help you through the crisis. Self help books can also be helpful, the authors are usually professionals in the field or those you’ve been where you are right now, and so suggestions from them can be helpful. Find a reputable internet forum for depression to join and also register for a local depression group, with this kind of support, you’ll have the strength required to fight depression.

Hormone Imbalances And Depression

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011 No Commented
Under: Depression

Serotonin depression is a mood disorder due to the imbalance in the hormone, serotonin. The symptoms can affect bipolar, anxiety and depressive eating disorders.

Serotonin is what is called a monoamine transporter. It carries important messages along the neural pathway in the brain. It’s a bit like the postman who will use the pathways in the brain to carry the letter you posted.

In Serotonin depression it’s as if the letter writer ran out of paper to write on or didn’t mail it properly and the receptors pick it up too quickly and it gets scrambled up somehow. This causes an imbalance of mood, energy or understanding and can lead to depression. It has also been discovered that the release of serotonin is somehow tied in with the sleep cycle and the body’s natural circadian rhythms.

There are two major types of serotonin depression. It can be due to a genetic defect in the brain’s serotonin receptors (mailboxes), called 5HTT receptor sites. These are too short making them too quick to absorb the serotonin and then to release it back into the neural pathway properly causing a shortage.

Many antidepressant medications are designed to block these receptor sites (5HTT) from absorbing serotonin too quickly. That is why they are called Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRI’s) and are used for depression but recent tests are now questioning whether they are as effective as it was first believed. They have also found that it has an impact on the teenage suicide rate.

SSRI’s may not be effective in many cases because of the brain’s inability to produce enough serotonin to begin with. If levels of serotonin are too low the SSRI’s won’t work. This is the second type of serotonin depression – the brain’s inability to produce enough serotonin. The problem is that one cannot just take a serotonin supplement. The brain’s defence mechanism called the brain barrier protects it from outside chemicals which are why the supplements don’t work well.

Sometimes the brain can temporarily get the extra serotonin it needs from carbohydrates in sugars and starches as these cause the pancreas to release insulin to break down sugars. This insulin gets the brain barrier to open and absorb the serotonin compounds giving the person a ‘high’ for a while until they run out of serotonin again. Then they crave more carbohydrates, put on weight and create a cycle which is why this is not a good way to get serotonin into the body.

Research shows that the body needs different hormones at different times of day such as melatonin to help us sleep and serotonin during the day. The control centre that regulates these hormones is called the Suprachaismatic Nucleus, or body clock, and is in a part called the hypothalamus in the back of the brain. This body clock uses light as a signal to know when to produce the right hormones and uses darkness to produce night time hormones. As people age or suffer from stress it can malfunction causing many a sleepless night. Light produces serotonin and light therapy has been found to help with mood disorders especially in winter with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

In terms of natural supplements studies show St. John’s Wort (Hypericum) can sometimes be as effective as Prozac in treating depression because it affects all three neurotransmitters (serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine). There is no other pharmacological medication that does this and it works by causing these neurotransmitters to stay in the synaptic system longer and stopping absorption too quickly. These neurotransmitters are the messengers, carrying the brain’s commands to where they need to go. Since they stay in the system longer, the brain’s cells communicate better with each other and this is why many depressed people respond so well to St. John’s Wort. It is important though that if you are on medication you tell your doctor you want to start taking St John’s Wort as it accelerates the liver’s ability to break down and can inter-act with other medications.

A vitamin B deficiency is also usually in play when one is depressed due to low folic acid levels. That is how depression usually starts. Medications also work better if folic acid is taken. Vitamin B also helps with mood swings associated with low self esteem, menopause and PMT. It is important to buy the highest B complex that you can find.

Fish oils such as Omega-3 Fatty Acids (DHA and EPA) are also anti-depressants and studies show they can help in stabilising bipolar depression. These may work by nourishing the nerve cells in the brain which are mostly made of DHE fatty acids. Depressed people have low DHE levels so the fish oil will raise these as well as lowering the risk of heart attacks, strokes and help build better bones. It is important to take vitamin C and E and other natural anti oxidants with these as they can produce free radicals if you take too much of them. Goji Juice is one of the best antioxidants. Also fish oils can sometimes interfere with anti-clotting medications.

DHEA is also a natural anti depressant which helps with moods but it may also affect hormone levels as DHEA is produced by the adrenal glands and converted into oestrogen, testosterone and other hormones in the body. Too much may cause oily skin, some facial hair which is rare and a lowering of the voice. Chromium Picolinate is helpful in cases of dysthymia and selenium helps with concentration and energy whilst Zinc can also lift one’s mood.

The old remedy of L-Tryptophan, 5-HTP used in the past does not work that well though. Although L-Tryptophan is the basic building block of serotonin and 5-HTP is a synthesized intermediate compound close to serotonin and the combining of these doesn’t necessarily produce more serotonin.

Serotonin is a difficult substance to produce artificially and therefore it makes serotonin depression a difficult disorder to treat.

A Case Study On Melancholic Depression

Thursday, April 14th, 2011 No Commented
Under: Depression

Rudy (real name withheld) has suffered from Melancholia all his life. His first recollection was that at age five, he would run away from attending Kindergarten and come home to his room of darkness. He would find that sitting in the dark was what he preferred.

At age 47, he was in a Real Estate business with a partner. For all intents and purposes, his business was going well. He relied on word of mouth decisions to run his business and left his partner to manage the accounting and administrative sides of business. He trusted his partner completely and thought he had a strong relationship with his business partner.

One day, his partner told him that he had a debt of $50,000. Rudy did not question his partner in detail about his debt. He instead went home and discussed this with his wife. There was a heated exchange between the two and his wife told him that she was leaving. He pleaded with her but to no avail. Late in the night, she packed her bags, called a cab and left.

Rudy did not know what to do. He decided he should go to bed in the hope that he would analyse his issues in the morning and come up with an acceptable solution. He however did not sleep all night.

Waking up at around 4am, he walked into a dark room which he had used before. The room was painted dark blue. Dark blue curtains and a dim light contributed to its darkness. It was still pitch dark outside. The room was as silent as a graveyard. In one corner of the room was a bed barely visible. Wayne headed towards this sitting on the bed and switching off the light. He wanted the comfort of darkness.

He sat there on the bed feeling isolated from the World. Burying his head into his hands, he contemplated his future. There appeared to be no way forward. The tentacles of debt, deceit and lost relationship were stabbing deep into his mind from all angles. If he escaped from one, the second issue became more prominent. It was as if a slow moving truck was rolling over his body and there was no escape.

He therefore contemplated killing himself. He thought for a minute about whether he should ascend the ladder of death slowly. This would mean for him jumping from a bridge into a river, drifting downstream in the swift current and slowing drowning into death. Out of the blue came a call, the shrill sound of which brought him to the present. On the other end of the line was his best friend who came over quickly and took him to the hospital.

So through the help of a very close friend, he picked himself up and now works as a Real Estate Agent. He has progressed quickly, paid off his debts and is doing very well for himself.

There are a number of symptoms of this form of depression that this brief case study highlights which I want to summarize. These are:

  • Melancholic Depression can be caused through a stressful situation or event. It can cause other consequences such as break up in relationship.
  • Such a situation can result in the sufferer feeling sad, moody or crappy, hopeless, helpless, numb and empty.
  • It leaves the sufferer anxious about the future.
  • The sufferer feels empty, self critical and wanting to run away from everything. Often the person who suffers from such a condition loses interest in life.
  • Melancholia causes insomnia.
  • The sufferer can also have suicidal tendencies.

It is important that anyone suffering from melancholia seeks expert medical advice as quickly as possibly.

New Year’s Blues and New Answers for Depression Sufferers

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011 No Commented
Under: Depression

For many people, the end of the year is simply the beginning of another year of on-going pain, self-disappointment and a deepening sadness.

And, for many sad/depressed people, the Christmas blues can start several weeks before the actual holiday because so many are reminded of their pain by the usual signals of the holiday “where everybody is feeling happy” – except the depression sufferer.

Common depression symptoms are, you should always see a doctor for an accurate diagnosis.

– You sleep too little or too much
– Previously easy tasks are now difficult to accomplish because of an inability to concentrate
– Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness fill your mind
– You feel you can’t control your negative thoughts, no matter what you do
– You are eating too little or too much
– Unusual irritability
– You have thoughts that life so painful that it is not worth living (Get help now if this is the case)

Instead of a “New Year” soon to be marred by traditionally failed resolutions, people in pain want “New Depression Answers” that actually work.

The good news is that there is an FDA approved solution that is drug free which has worked for many people who have previously not been helped by other depression treatments.

What is TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation)?

First, here’s what happens: The TMS device is placed over a portion of the patient’s scalp where it is then programmed to send out a narrowly focused magnetic field in pulses.

Second, the healing occurs for a significant percentage of patients because these energetic pulses stimulate nerve cells in an area of the brain associated with controlling mood.

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One way to think of this is to imagine a car stuck in a rut. Then, someone comes along and help rocks the car out of the rut with a series of energetic pushes to help the car finally get unstuck.

How long does TMS treatment take? From the moment the machine is turned on to send energetic healing pulses to the moment it stops takes approximately 37 minutes.

A patient attends 5 TMS sessions per week over a 4-6 week period for a total of 20-30 anti-depression treatments. Like any other method of emotional healing, TMS will not work for everyone however, attempting to heal is better than the alternative(s).

Depression is a multi-faceted challenge for the sufferer as well as those who love and care for the one in pain and so often, new methods can provide surprisingly good results making everyone’s lives better.

The final point to this article? Hang in there. Never give up. Depression can be beat and often the answers are those that are new.

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The Natural Treatment for Depression

Saturday, April 2nd, 2011 No Commented
Under: Depression

Depression is an illness that needs to be attended to. It affects the general well being of a person particularly the thoughts, mood and body. There are no known causes of depression but the risk factors include medications, physical/medical illness, hormonal, family history and stress. The factors are known to put the person at risk of going into a state of depression. While there are known treatments for depression, chances are it can recur at any given time if not properly managed. The underlying causes of depression must be addressed to avoid recurrence.

Treatments include a combination of medications and psychotherapy or depending on the underlying cause and degree, it can either be through medication or psychotherapy. People afflicted with depression manifest symptoms such as irritability, fatigue, restlessness and feelings of helplessness, guilt, worthlessness and pessimism.

Dealing with the illness is a gargantuan task because it involves patience, courage and strength from the same person who has the disease. It also entails resilience in managing the obstacles and constraints that block a person from overcoming depression. Many people who suffer from depression are those who cannot accept failures in things they are so fixated at. The patterns of failures thus lead them to depression.

Clinical scientists and the realms of behavioral sciences are continuously finding new ways of depression therapies. However, there are also tried and tested techniques, besides medications, to overcome depression. Psychological research studies show that physical exercises such as jogging, walking and other aerobic activities have significantly reduced the depressive state a person is in. Psychotherapy is a major therapy for depression. This involves a dialogue between the person with depression and a psychotherapist.

Psychotherapy Methods

There are a number of methods engaged in psychotherapy to alleviate the condition. Normally, psychotherapists use a wide range of methods and requires the patient to be involved in a communication with the therapist. This is generally known as the talking therapy to improve on the person’s personal well-being. Sometimes, besides the patient himself/herself, psychotherapists will engage the family of the patient (family therapy) in the talking therapy. Other psychotherapy approaches include the behavioral cognitive therapy, music and arts appreciation to brighten the mood.

Nutritional Therapy

Food rich in serotonin are mood regulators. Serotonin is known to make people happy and excited and thus, decrease the chances of depression. Mostly, this is the carbohydrate-rich and sweets/sugary snacks. Chocolates is one of the best known mood regulator. Other food rich in serotonin are potatoes and vegetables and low-fat cereals. Protein-rich food are to be avoided.

Herbal Treatment

The most common alternative to any disease is the herbal treatment. For depression, St. John’s Wort is said to be help boost the serotonin levels, therefore brightening the person’s mood and reducing depressive feelings and stress. Other herbs include ginko biloba, passion flower and kava kava.

Lifestyle Modification

Lifestyle modification is also recommended to help reduce depression. Vices such as drinking alcoholic beverages and smoking must be avoided, if not minimized. A restful evening helps. Work style and relationships can also be modified to lessen the stress that can lead to depression.

Make your life healthier and happier and fight depression by making the right choices.

4 Ways to Fight Against Depression

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011 No Commented
Under: Depression

With the fast development of economy and society, people have more reasons to be depressed. One of the important factors that they feel depressed is a lack of money, and this becomes more obvious than that in the past.

Actually, depression is much more difficult for people to cure according to some medical methods. Depression cannot be treated as one kind of illness, for it is one of human emotions and mainly depends on the mental aspect.

Then how to fight against depression in daily life has become a hot topic for people. Here I recommend four pieces of advice for you to follow, hope you have a healthy body.

  1. Don’t blame yourself. This is the most simple and easy thing for you to fight against depression. The feeling of ashamed, guilt and inadequacy always bring you into a bad circulation that you cannot walk out by yourself. The long time self – denial makes your life go into disorder, and causes depression at last. If you want to get rid of depression, at first you should confirm yourself and fill yourself with confidence, then you will get rid of depression gradually. Of course, the journey of getting rid of depression is long, and you should be patient and wait for the bright day.
  2. Talk with friends. It’s a wise solution for you to tell your depression to your friend. Maybe they cannot entirely understand your feeling; at least you can gain emotional support from them. Depression is not like a broken arm or a headache which most people have experienced, so you don’t have to expect everyone to understand you. Just telling them and you will get released.
  3. Maintain a daily routine. People who have experienced depression may feel that they cannot calm down and are tired of the surroundings that they are familiar with. If you feel depression, you should pay much attention to the change of your mood and temper. Sticking to a regular routine every day as much as possible can help you calm down the temper and brings you a peaceful mood.
  4. Have a good sleep. People who feel depression always have something that buried in their heart and they don’t like to tell other people. If you are troubled by many trifles and don’t have any good ideas on solving them. It’s easy for you to get into depression. So my advice here is to go to bed to have a good sleep without thinking anything. After the enough sleep, you will feel better than before.

How to Help Someone Who Is Depressed Using NLP?

Saturday, February 19th, 2011 No Commented
Under: Depression

So, how to help someone who is depressed using NLP? NLP surely works to treat depression; in fact it works quickly than any other option. When compared to other forms of therapy, it has been observed that NLP is more efficient. Many practitioners who have undergone certified NLP trainings can efficiently handle depression. There are some steps to treat depression that are taught in NLP trainings.

You already know what depression is, but the first step in the NLP trainings to cure depression ensures that the usage of the word depression should be eliminated as it doesn’t help the patient at all. This kind of therapy proves great when it comes to dealing with anybody who actually thinks he is depressed as it is completely drug free, works fast and also shows its benefits in some other areas of life as well.

NLP specifically works on what the patient sees, feels, or hears when he is in the state of depression. Let me give you an example: First, ask yourself a question: How do I go into the state of depression? In order to get depressed, anybody has to think of certain things which lead to that state and also do certain things which trigger that state. So, first figure out and identify what exactly those things are so that you can eliminate depression. Imagine how any depressed person actually looks. You will understand that anybody undergoing depression looks pale, sad and has a dull face.

Now, in the NLP trainings you will learn that just by altering how a person moves his body can surely improve the way he feels. If you try to sit straight while holding your head high with a smile on the face, you will observe a change. You can also walk fast and see the difference in the state of the mind. It means that even the motion of your body surely influences your emotions. This is the basic principle that you will learn during the NLP trainings.

Apart from changing your physiology, you can also change various thought patterns. Now, ask yourself this question: when I am in the state of depression, what do I actually think about? What are the visions that I see in my mind? Now, if certain visions in your mind are the main cause for depression, then by minimizing them in your mind, you can surely reduce the influence of these images on your emotions.

Any experienced NLP practitioner can efficiently treat depression without drugs. So, if you can actually attend the certified NLP trainings, you can gain a better picture of the whole process.

Depression: The Descent Into Darkness

Wednesday, January 19th, 2011 No Commented
Under: Depression

The year was 1999. The summer of 1999, as a matter fact. I could not sleep; I was shaking all of the time. What was going on, I asked myself.

I decided to go see a doctor. My primary physician was not on my insurance plan, so I chose to go see somebody who was. He was a very nice man who was spiritual, which made me feel more comfortable, since I really did not know anything about him. After checking me over, his treatment plan was to get more exercise and keep going to church. Being so messed up, I went on my merry way without saying anything.

After a week or so, I was not feeling any better. Actually, I was getting worse. My father told me to go see my primary doctor because he knew me and I could afford the higher cost. So, I did. What a difference. After telling the doctor how I was feeling. he asked me all of the “legendary” questions regarding a diagnosis of depression. I think I answered “Yes” to all of them except the ones related to suicide. I had not gotten to that point, YET!

There I was, diagnosed with major depression. Since I had the lowest opinion of myself that anyone could possibly have, the question I asked myself was “What else could possibly go wrong in my life?”

The doctor prescribed anti-depressants and sleeping pills. I cannot remember which one because there were so many over the years. (I think it was Paxil.) God, was I happy, or so I thought. I asked him about therapy, not telling him that I had made an appointment with one already. Being the great “pill pusher” that so many medical professionals are, he said the anti-depressants would probably take care of about 90% of the depression.

Off I went, not able to get to the pharmacy fast enough. Give me the drugs, please give me the drugs. The euphoria over getting medication that might help me lasted just a short time.

I started learning about the Internet-it had so much information, I did some research on the anti-depressants and sleeping pills I had been prescribed. I learned about the possible side effects of psychotropic drugs, and guess what! Those drugs have the possibility of making you worse off than you already are.

This was perfect for me. I could focus on what could happen to me rather than what the “benefits” of the drugs might be. I mean, “Worry” was my middle name. I worried about the side effects of the anti-depressants and becoming dependent on the sleeping pills. Talk about a recipe for disaster. It was the main course.

Let us not forget that I started therapy the day after I was diagnosed with depression. Now, you see, I had to be a total “whack job” because therapy was for the total losers of the world. Could I put any bigger stigma on myself than being on anti-depressants and going to therapy? I think not!

Living the Unending Cycle of Depression

Friday, November 19th, 2010 No Commented
Under: Depression

As a thinking and feeling being, man naturally gets depressed once in a while. However, when the feeling of drowning, sadness and bitterness goes on for more than a week or a month, this is already an indication or a warning sign that something is wrong.

Knowing that you might be prone to depression is tricky. Sometimes others may already have depression but still do not know it. This can become dangerous or health-hazardous. I should know because I nearly ended my life just because I did not fully understand what was going on with me. The worse is, I would feel that I was in control and keep myself in a cycle of denial that I was getting better and better and that I could over come it. I was wrong.

The biggest mistake of people with depression is denial. As I have mentioned earlier, when you have this nagging feeling that you are always down, like someone has died on a daily basis, even when there are occasions that would call for celebration, enjoyment or happiness, one usually shrugs this off. Until it is usually too late and one is already caught deep within the cycle of depression that never ends.
The usual signs that a person is having depression are easily the following:

• A person who just lost interest in life – everything about going through daily living, like eating, sleeping, talking to people, socializing, working and doing usual hobbies;

• An unusual change in sleeping patterns – others find it hard to sleep and keep tossing and turning; or like me, others would tend to sleep most of the time, even when my head would ache from all the sleeping, I would not have any motivation to get up from bed. I would rather find solace in escaping into the darkness of sleep

• An immense feeling of worthlessness or uselessness and that life is not worth living anymore – for no apparent reason. I used to feel unwanted. When people talk to me I would think that they hate me or don’t want me around them. It is pretty weird, but I would think that I am the loneliest person there is in the planet;

• Unusual occurrence of aches and pains in the body and inability to focus on work at hand or a particular topic (for students). Since I was oversleeping, and mostly I would force myself to work and get through the day, I would be lethargic and I would not be able to concentrate on anything at all.

The common signs associated with depression seem natural that a normal person would go through. This is the reason why it is oftentimes hard to detect people with depression unless they really share their feelings.

Usually people with depression think that they can get out of the cycle. Then most often these people just force themselves into activities that they thought would help alleviate the feeling of depression, only to realize in the end that these activities – clubbing, drinking, too-much socializing, spending time out of work and having more vacation time, etc. – would make them even sinker deeper into the depression pit.

The results of these efforts to temporarily alleviate depression – poor work or study performance, low energy levels, suspensions or ultimately loss of work due to poor output – only push depressed persons farther into the cycle. I lost my job because I would find more comfort in escaping responsibilities and the possibility that I would get reprimanded for poor work output or late work submission. Memos kept piling up my desk until I was asked to find another work.

Others would resort to what they think as the ultimate solution – ending their lives. I used to always feel that too. I felt that it would not matter if I killed myself since the world has no use for me anyway.

People suffering from depression and suicidal tendencies need people to talk to. I find relief in talking to my friends. Their patience and encouragement give me the strength I need to keep trying and to follow intervention activities so that I may finally be free of this cycle.

Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark

Thursday, October 28th, 2010 No Commented
Under: Depression

The dark months can create challenges for getting enough sun and Vitamin D. Some issues associated with limited sunlight and Vitamin D deficiencies are associated with rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid issues, Seasonal Affective Disorder, depression, fatigue and other disorders. That’s why full spectrum light and energizing your body for greater absorption of light is essential. Whether it’s winter or just feeling dark, this article will give you some natural modalities to absorb more light! Light is one of the major nutrients for the body-mind. It is a food for creating energy. When you increase the amount of light you absorb through your eyes, the body-mind moves into a higher state of coherence. Even visualizing a color feeds your body-mind system including your emotional and mental attitude.

Here are 12 easy, fund and natural ways to increase your energy and sense of well-being during the dark months.

  1. Use colors to brighten up. The use of pink, yellow, and reds stimulate the adrenal glands and produces dopamine. Wear these colors to give yourself a lift.
  2. Brighten your space with flowers and scents. Gazing at flowers has been proven to enhance your connection to enhance happiness. It is a wonderful way to bring the light processed through nature inside.
  3. Use natural scents to pamper your five senses. Natural aromas that remind of sweet foods set off endorphins that impact our sense of feeling good. Medical experiments have shown that vanilla fragrance reduces stress and anxiety and has an impact on the emotional brain. Rose and licorice scents help when you feel overwhelmed. Lemon is invigorating and refreshing. Lavender helps with insomnia and helps you relax. Incorporate cinnamon or vanilla in your cooking. The sweetness we associate with these smells bring in Earth Element (summer), and are mood-altering in all their associations with sweetness.
  4. Eat foods that support good moods. Include eating and drinking citris in the morning. The Vitamin C lowers the stress hormone, cortisol. Add lemon to your cup of green tea to increase the effects of the antioxidents. Mix red peppers into your salads.
    Eat violet foods. They contain Vitamin D. On the list are all kinds of berries including blueberries, elderberries, and blackberries. Eat eggplant and grapes. Eat whole foods around the color wheel for the full spectrum. Color Code by James Joseph, et al details how to eat a full-spectrum diet.
    Munch on some crunchy foods. This could be the reason why all the people I know LOVE to go to the movies on rainy days! You see the crunchiness of the chewing popcorn stimulates a nerve that signals the brain to release some mood-enhancing chemicals. The mouth has more nerve ending localized in one area of the body. Eat a whole apple or snack on sunflower seeds to energize your day.
  5. Create an indoor garden of herbs for cooking. Not only will smell and touch of these plants connect you to energizing fragrances, but will also create mood-enhancing serotonin* from touching the soil.
  6. Visualize yourself in a warm and sunny place. Imagining something is an internal process which connects you directly to the experience. Play some music that enhances the experience whether it is Caribbean, Hawaiian, or sounds of waves or nature. Visualization will create moving into relaxation on all levels.
  7. Keep moving. Life is energy is motion. Find a way to experience the freedom you do have during the summer months for movement in some way. Take a salsa class, go to an indoor pool, walk around the shopping mall with a friend. Meet a friend for a walk, good conversation and cup of tea. Setting up time for movement in the morning triggers an increase in metabolism that lasts into the day. Walking and stretching improves your mood by releasing endorphins, your body’s natural opiates.
  8. Listen to music that uplifts. You know the songs that make you want to move and get you singing along. Play Baroque music to support focus, learning and vitality. The interval of a fifth in Baroque harmonizes and energizes! The Brainwave Symphony is a wonderful option.*
  9. Spend time with people and pet having fun! Petting your pet can create soothing endorphin response. Make time to be with dear friends! Smiling supports your inmmune system. Work with the Inner Smile Meditation from the book, Free Your Breath, Free Your Live by Dennis Lewis. Think of reasons to smile. Use these memories when you need a pick me up of energy. A few moments go a long way to brighten your day!
  10. Get a full night of sleep. Just an extra hour of sleep per night helps protect your heart, and regulates your body’s need for homeostasis and stress relief.
  11. Get out into natural or full-spectrum light 5-15 minutes a day. There are a number of products online that make it possible to bring full-spectrum light indoors. Take off your glasses when possible in natural light to drink in those rays!
  12. It’s in your hands. Your hands are sub-chakras of the heart. Palming is an exercise that relieves stress in your eyes. Less stress= more light absorbed. It is also deeply relaxing mentally and emotionally. It is best to face natural light for this activity.

Here’s How

  • Rest you right hand over your right eye. Allow your fingers to rest over the fingers of your right hand diagonally across your forehead.
  • Cup your left palm over your left eye. Allow your fingers to rest over your forehead diagonally over your other hand.
  • No light should enter. Close your eyes. Relax deeply into the darkness.
  • Say out loud or to yourself, “Love,” “Gratitude,” “Faith,” “Thank you,” “Trust” or other positive words.
  • Open your eyes in the darkness. You can also take your palms away slightly.
  • Open your eyes in the space and take in color, and then replace your palms to relax.
    When you are ready, slowly take your palms away. Slowly open your eyes to take in the light and beauty of the world around you.

*Serotonin and Dopamine are neurotransmitters associated with supporting positive mood. Article compilation includes Resonance Repatterning modalities, material from The Role of Music in the 21st Century, Color Code, American Heart Associaton, Brainwave Symphony, and FreeYour Breath, Free Your Life.*

Depression Has A Genetic Cause

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010 No Commented
Under: Depression

When people talk about someone being “depressed” most often they are referring to what medical professionals term “unipolar depression”. Other terms used to describe the condition are “clinical depression”, “major depressive illness”, and “major depression with melancholic features”. Regardless of the name, all these refer to the same illness located in the same region of the brain, damaging the same cells and causing the same chemical imbalances. Other conditions that also have “depression” in their name for example “bipolar depression” are very different in the cells and chemicals affected.

Over the last several decades medical research has established a definite genetic link for unipolar depression. If one of your parents and other members of your immediate family are afflicted with unipolar depression you have a one in five (20%) chance of suffering it yourself. Should both parents have the depressive gene your odds of being depressive as well fall to one in two (50%). But even when no one in your family suffers from unipolar depression, or has the genetic marker, the genes can and do show up spontaneously.

Just how important this genetic component is has been proven by studies that focused on people with identical genes (twins) but, for a variety of reasons, were raised apart by different parents. These studies concluded that, if both twins had the depression gene, both individual were most likely suffering from unipolar depression regardless of the different life experiences and conditions.

The genes that have been identified as causing unipolar depression act by causing the brain to over react to stress stimulation. It is normal for everyone to secrete a steroid stress hormone into the body and certain chemicals into the brain when faced with a stressful situation. Although this process is completely normal, those who suffer from unipolar depression don’t turn off these hormones and chemicals when the stress is past. And when these substances remain at high levels for too long a time, they cause severe damage to healthy brain cells which is a major contributing cause to the disease.

For example, athletes who perform at high levels often release steroid stress hormones to meet a physical challenge such as catching a pass or hitting a baseball in a pressure situation. This happens for just a short period of time, once the immediate challenge is past the athlete’s body turns off the stress response and the body reverts to its normal state.
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In those people who carry the genes responsible for unipolar depression these responses to stress are not able to be turned off. All the normal stresses of everyday life cause large amounts of the steroid stress hormones and other chemicals to flood the brain and this overload causes severe damage to otherwise healthy brain cells which eventually brings on unipolar depression.

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